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Center of Gravity Limitations

C-1
Example
777-200 Center of
Gravity Limits
(Ref. AFM or WBM)

How does Boeing

determine C.G.
limits such as
these for any given
airplane model?

C-2
Development of the Weight versus
Moment C.G. Grid

C-3
Development of the Weight versus
Moment C.G. Grid
Datum for B.A.

lemac Datum

(-) (+)
m.a.c.
Moment = WT * L
L

WT C-4
Development of the Weight versus
Moment C.G. Grid
Datum

Datum

ar m = L

= 2L
arm
(-) (+)

=-2

ar m
m.a.c.

L
L

Weight (~ 1000 lb)

-2L 2L

WT WT WT

Moment1 = WT * L

Moment2 = WT * 2L

Moment3 = WT * (-2L)

Moment (in-lb)
C-5
Development of the Weight versus
Moment C.G. Grid
c.g. (%mac)
5% 10% 15% 20% 25% 30% 35% 40% 45% 50%

Datum
Weight (~ 1000 lb)

Moment (in-lb) C-6

Development of the Weight versus
Moment C.G. Grid
c.g. (%mac)
5% 10% 15% 20% 25% 30% 35% 40% 45% 50%

Datum
Weight (1000 kg)
Weight (1000 kg)

Convert from weight

versus %MAC to weight
versus moment

Center of Gravity ~ %MAC Moment (kg-in) C-7

Development of the Weight versus
Moment C.G. Grid
c.g. (%mac)
5% 10% 15% 20% 25% 30% 35% 40% 45% 50%

Datum
Enlarge this
Area of Interest
Weight (1000 kg)

Moment (kg-in) C-8

Development of the Weight versus
Moment C.G. Grid
c.g. (%mac)
5% 10% 15% 20% 25% 30% 35% 40% 45% 50%

Moment (kg-in) C-9

Advantage of this Format is the
Datum
c.g. (%mac)
5% 10% 15% 20% 25% 30% 35% 40% 45% 50%
xInit
x2

x3 x1
WT2
1 3
2
WT1
WT3 2

WTInit 3 1

Total Moment = WTInit * xInit +

(WT3 * x3 ) - (WT1 * x1 ) - (WT2 * x2 )

Total Weight = WTInit + WT1 + WT2

+ WT3 2
1 3

2
Order of application does not 3 1
affect final result
Starting point does not affect
final weight and moment
C-10
Determining Desired Forward and Aft
C.G. Limits

C-11
Design Objectives

The forward and aft C.G. limits for a given airplane model
are selected by Boeing during the design of the airplane,
and are meant to allow for airline-to-airline variations in:
- Operational Empty Weights
- Interior Seating Arrangements
- Operational Curtailments
The airplane structure and layout is then designed to allow
eventually certified) limits.
Lets look at a simplified example of how this process
proceeded for the 767-400 design.
C-12
AIRPLANE EMPTY WEIGHT & C.G.

0% 10% 20% 30% 40%

GROSS WEIGHT (1000 LB) 500

400

300

Most Aft OEW C.G.

Most Fwd OEW C.G. to consider based
to consider based on tri-class
on dual-class
OEW
200

CENTER OF GRAVITY (%MAC)

C-13
AIRPLANE WEIGHT & C.G.
WITH PASSENGERS
0% 10% 20% 30% 40%
500

Assumed
GROSS WEIGHT (1000 LB)

400 Assumed

300 Chosen as most

reasonable Aft C.G.
to consider based on
DC

tri-class with some

Most Fwd C.G. to TC business seats filled
consider based on
OEW
and first empty with
200 economy full)
CENTER OF GRAVITY (%MAC)
C-14
AIRPLANE WEIGHT & C.G.
WITH PASSENGERS and CARGO
0% 10% 20% 30% 40%
GROSS WEIGHT (1000 LB) 500

consider based
and baggage
Most Fwd C.G. to
consider based

OEW
200

CENTER OF GRAVITY (%MAC)

C-15
AIRPLANE WEIGHT & C.G.
WITH PASSENGERS, CARGO & FUEL
0% 10% 20% 30% 40%
GROSS WEIGHT (1000 LB) 500

300

OEW
200

CENTER OF GRAVITY (%MAC)

C-16
AIRPLANE WEIGHT & C.G.
WITH PASSENGERS, CARGO & FUEL
0% 10% 20% 30% 40%
500
Required C.G. Range to cover
GROSS WEIGHT (1000 LB)

400

300

OEW
200

CENTER OF GRAVITY (%MAC)

C-17
AIRPLANE WEIGHT & C.G.
WITH PASSENGERS, CARGO & FUEL
0% 10% 20% 30% 40%
GROSS WEIGHT (1000 LB) 500

400
Notice that if this point had
been chosen as the most
aft C.G. to consider prior to
have produced a more
forward aft limit
300

OEW
200

CENTER OF GRAVITY (%MAC)

C-18
Accounting for Operational CG Variations
AIRPLANE WEIGHT & C.G.
WITH PASSENGERS, CARGO & FUEL
0% 10% 20% 30% 40%
500
Estimate curtailments airlines
will use to account for
differences between calculated
and actual C.G. due to:
GROSS WEIGHT (1000 LB)

Gear and flap movement

400 Estimat

ents
Movement of pax, crew and
service carts during flight

urtailm
ed

forward

water and waste tanks

ft c
ated a
Differences between
calculated and actual C.G.
curtailm

300

Estim
location of passengers,
cargo, and fuel
ents

OEW
200

CENTER OF GRAVITY (%MAC)

C-19
Accounting for Operational CG Variations
AIRPLANE WEIGHT & C.G.
WITH PASSENGERS, CARGO & FUEL
0% 10% 20% 30% 40%
500
Required C.G. Range to cover
possible curtailments
GROSS WEIGHT (1000 LB)

400

300

OEW
200

CENTER OF GRAVITY (%MAC)

C-20
Consider Structural and
Performance Weight Targets
AIRPLANE WEIGHT & C.G.
WITH PASSENGERS, CARGO & FUEL
0% 10% 20% 30% 40%
500

MTOW
GROSS WEIGHT (1000 LB)

400
MLW

MZFW

300

OEW
200

CENTER OF GRAVITY (%MAC)

C-21
Consider Other Constraints
AIRPLANE WEIGHT & C.G.
WITH PASSENGERS, CARGO & FUEL
0% 10% 20% 30% 40%
500

Constant
MTOW
GROSS WEIGHT (1000 LB)

400
MLW

MZFW

300

OEW
200

C-22

The strength of the wings structure can impose a

limitation on the forward C.G. limits.
Lift Wing

Lift Tail
Weight
For the airplane to be in equilibrium, the sum of the moments about the
tail must = 0:
M Tail = W (B.A.Tail B.A.C.G.) L Wing(B.A.Tail B.A.Wing) = 0

L Wing = W (B.A.Tail B.A.C.G.)

(B.A.Tail B.A.Wing)

The load on the wing is increased both by increasing

airplane weight, and by forward movement of the center of
gravity. Eventually, the wings limits are reached.
C-23
Consider Other Constraints
AIRPLANE WEIGHT & C.G.
WITH PASSENGERS, CARGO & FUEL
0% 10% 20% 30% 40%
500

Constant
MTOW
GROSS WEIGHT (1000 LB)

400
MLW

Constant MZFW

300

OEW
200

C-24

The strength of the tail and aft body structure can

impose a limitation on the forward C.G. limits.
Lift Wing

Lift Tail

For the airplane to be in equilibrium, the sum of the moments about the wing
must = 0 :
M Wing = W (B.A. Wing B.A. C.G.) LTail (B.A.Tail B.A.Wing) = 0

LTail = W (B.A. Wing B.A. C.G.)

(B.A.Tail B.A.Wing)

The load on the tail and aft body is increased both by

increasing airplane weight, and by forward movement of
the center of gravity. Eventually, the tail or aft bodys limits
are reached. C-25
Consider Other Constraints
AIRPLANE WEIGHT & C.G.
WITH PASSENGERS, CARGO & FUEL
0% 10% 20% 30% 40%
500
Constant
Constant
MTOW
GROSS WEIGHT (1000 LB)

400
MLW

Constant MZFW

300

OEW
200

CENTER OF GRAVITY (%MAC)

C-26
The strength of the nose gear structure can
impose a limitation on the forward C.G. limits.

For the airplane to be in equilibrium, the sum of the moments about the main landing
gear must = 0 :
M MLG = W (B.A. MLG B.A. C.G.) LNLG (B.A. MLG B.A. NLG) = 0

LNLG = W (B.A. MLG B.A. C.G.)

(B.A. MLG B.A. NLG)

The load on the NLG is increased both by increasing

airplane weight, and by forward movement of the center of
gravity. Eventually, the NLG limits are reached.
C-27
Consider Other Constraints
AIRPLANE WEIGHT & C.G.
WITH PASSENGERS, CARGO & FUEL
0% 10% 20% 30% 40%
500
Constant
Constant
GROSS WEIGHT (1000 LB)

400
MLW

Constant MZFW

300

OEW
200

CENTER OF GRAVITY (%MAC)

C-28
The strength of the main landing gear structure can
impose a limitation on the aft C.G. limits.

For the airplane to be in equilibrium, the sum of the moments about the nose landing
gear must = 0 :
M NLG = LMLG (B.A. MLG B.A. NLG) W (B.A. C.G. B.A. NLG) = 0

LMLG = W (B.A. C.G. B.A. NLG)

(B.A. MLG B.A. NLG)

The load on the MLG is increased both by increasing

airplane weight, and by aft movement of the center of
gravity. Eventually, the MLG limits are reached.
C-29
Consider Other Constraints
AIRPLANE WEIGHT & C.G.
WITH PASSENGERS, CARGO & FUEL
0% 10% 20% 30% 40%
500
Constant
Constant
GROSS WEIGHT (1000 LB)

400
MLW

p
Constant

-U
MZFW

Tip
off
ke
300

OEW Ta
200

CENTER OF GRAVITY (%MAC)

C-30
Takeoff Tip-Up Limit
At takeoff (full thrust, static airplane) there is a possibility of
reduced nose gear steering effectiveness, or actual
airplane tip up.

Thrust
h

BRAKE RELEASE TIP-UP
For the airplane to be in equilibrium, the sum of the moments about the airplane CG
must = 0 :
M CG = LMLG (B.A. MLG B.A. C.G.) T h LNLG (B.A. C.G. B.A. NLG) = 0

LNLG = LMLG (B.A. MLG B.A. C.G.) T h

(B.A. C.G. B.A. NLG)

The load on the NLG is reduced by: decreasing airplane weight, aft
movement of the C.G., and increasing thrust. At light enough NLG loads,
steering effectiveness is reduced, and eventually, the NLG load can
become negative causing the airplane to tip up.
C-31
All Constraints Considered
AIRPLANE WEIGHT & C.G.
WITH PASSENGERS, CARGO & FUEL
0% 10% 20% 30% 40%
500
Constant
Constant Constant
GROSS WEIGHT (1000 LB)

400
MLW

p
Constant

-U
MZFW

Tip
off
ke
300

OEW Ta
200

CENTER OF GRAVITY (%MAC)

C-32
Final Certified Structural Envelope
AIRPLANE WEIGHT & C.G.
WITH PASSENGERS, CARGO & FUEL
0% 10% 20% 30% 40%
500

MTOW
GROSS WEIGHT (1000 LB)

400
MLW

MZFW

300

200

CENTER OF GRAVITY (%MAC)

C-33
Ground Handling - Tipping
AIRPLANE WEIGHT & C.G.
WITH PASSENGERS, CARGO & FUEL
0% 10% 20% 30% 40%
500

MTOW
GROSS WEIGHT (1000 LB)

it
Lim
400

ity
MLW

bil

it
im
Sta

gL
nd
MZFW

pin
ou

Tip
Gr
300

Aft
OEW
200

CENTER OF GRAVITY (%MAC)

C-34
Ground Handling - Tipping
On the ground, if the C.G. moves aft of the main
landing gear, the airplane will tip up.

For the airplane to be in equilibrium, the sum of the moments about the main landing
gear must = 0 :
M MLG = W (B.A. MLG B.A. C.G.) LNLG (B.A. MLG B.A. NLG) = 0

LNLG = W (B.A. MLG B.A. C.G.)

(B.A. MLG B.A. NLG)

To account for the effects of towing and ground operations, a

ground stability limit is imposed at C.G.s forward of the
absolute aft limit. This ground stability limit takes into account
3% ramp slope, Towing forces, 40 knot headwind, etc.
C-35
Examples of C.G. Envelopes for
Actual Airplanes

C-36
Example
777-200 Center
of Gravity
Limits

(For training
purposes only.
Not kept up to date) C-37
Limitations on 777-200
Center of Gravity
Mission
Performance Main
300000 Wing Gea
r

r
ea

Fu
eG

el
280000

Ve
No

ct
or
260000

rol
& Cont
240000
GROSS WEIGHT ~ KG

y
Stabilit

220000

200000

-Up
180000

Tip
ase
Rele
160000

e
Brak
140000

120000
0 5 15 20 25 30 35 40 45 50
CENTER OF GRAVITY ~ % MAC
C-38
Example
737-800 Center
of Gravity
Limits

(For training
purposes only.
Not kept up to date) C-39
Limitations on 737-800
Center of Gravity
85000

Mission Main
Performance
80000 Wing Gear

Fu
el
rol

Ve
75000

ont

ct o
&C

r
ty
70000

bili
Sta

GROSS WEIGHT ~ KG

65000

60000

55000

-Up
e Ti p
50000

leas
e Re
45000

er
Brak

Pow
Tail
40000

35000
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40
CENTER OF GRAVITY ~ % MAC
C-40
Example
747-400 Center
of Gravity
Limits

(For training
purposes only.
Not kept up to date) C-41
Limitations on 747-400
Center of Gravity
420000

Mission
400000 Performance
W in g
Fu

ar
el

Ge
380000 Ve
ct

se
or

No
360000

Trim Line for Takeoff

Horizontal Stabilizer
340000
GROSS WEIGHT ~ KG

320000

300000 Landing Performance

280000
F
Ve uel

260000 ct
or

p
ip-U
Landing Limit for Gear

240000

eT
Body Strength,

eas
Rel
220000

-Up ease
ke
Bra

Rel
200000
ke
Tip
Bra

180000
0 5 10 25 20 25 30 35 40
CENTER OF GRAVITY ~ % MAC
C-42
End of
Center of Gravity Limitations

C-43